Sunday, December 21, 2008

A Bookish Meme

I learned of this meme from BJ and decided to give it a go. So, without further ado, I give you, the book meme...

Name a book you have read more than once.
To Kill a Mockingbird

Has a book ever fundamentally changed the way you see life? If yes, what was it?
The Grapes of Wrath

How do you choose a book? (by cover design and summary? recommendations? reviews? etc.)
Generally, I like to try for novels that have hit the MLA's top 100 novels of the 20th century, or other books written by authors who've made the list (mainly Steinbeck and Faulkner)

Do you prefer fiction or nonfiction?
Interesting question... I write nonfiction, and I love David Sedaris' work, but I generally read those MLA top 100 novels...

What's more important in a novel, beautiful writing or a gripping plot?
Wow that's a toughie... I wouldn't say the plot of The Grapes of Wrath is exactly gripping, yet the writing isn't the most beautiful, either. I'd say I like how the book makes me feel and what types of social commentary the author is making in writing it. But I digress. I'm on The Maltese Falcon right now, so I'd go with plot, I guess.

Most loved/memorable character (character/book)?
I'd say Holden Caulfield from The Catcher in the Rye. When I was a GA I taught this book to a group of very bright freshman, and I really enjoyed it.

Which book(s) can be found on your nightstand at the moment?
Don't have a nightstand, but the books that are nearest my bed are The Maltese Falcon (Dashiell Hammett), The Unvanquished (William Faulkner), The Hamlet (William Faulkner), and The Apple Tree (BJ Roan).

What was the last book you've read, and when was it?
Sanctuary by William Faulkner. I finished it about a week ago.

Have you ever given up on a book halfway in?
Yes. I tried to read The Catcher in the Rye in high school on my own time, and I just couldn't get into it. However, in college, I loved it. A similar thing happened to me with The Sound and the Fury.

P.S. I received a comment saying that I should tag people to do this meme. I completely forgot about doing that. Since BJ left it open to anyone who would like to participate, I'll do the same. Just let me know if you do because I'd love to read everyone else's posts for this meme!


Anonymous said...

thank you

Lilly said...

Interesting, the only book on your list I've read is To Kill a Mockingbird.

Indrayani said...

oh you should tag people to write the same meme post ! :)
I love reading too and yes, writing even MORE!!
I wanna make a career out of it too someday..
How are you goin about that?

BJ Roan said...

Nice choices of books, especially The Apple Tree by that BJ Roan author. Thanks for the plug. BJ

Alana said...


You like "My Manuscript" by David Sedaris? One of my students gave me a copy (few years ago.) I adore "Rooster at the Hitching Post." In fact, another student gave me a CD with Sedaris performing the essay live. Have you heard him read?

I can't effing believe you've made it through that much Faulkner. I've made it through "Barn Burning" and "A Rose for Emily." That was enough for me. I simply can't bear such dense narrative, which doesn't mean Faulkner wasn't beat into my head when I was in an MFA Program. But I'll take Sandra Cisneros or Stephen Elliot any day.


My favorite Steinbeck is Cannery Row and Tortilla Flats. What a writer! The only man who gets away with that many adjectives and still remains on track.

I'm wondering: Who was the first writer who made you want to write? Me, S.E. Hinton. I read The Outsiders when I was thirteen, and that's when I became a writer and my life's been ruined ever since.